May 15, 2013

How to Bring Your Children to Christ - Plus a FREE Lesson Plan

"How to Bring Your Children to Christ is a book every parent should read..."

As a mother, there is nothing I desire more than for my children to know and serve God and be saved through Jesus Christ. Yet I see that:
  • 88% of children raised in Christian homes leave the church at the age of 18 - and don't return (SBC)
  • 64% of "decisions for Christ" are made before age 18. 77% are made before age 21 (Barna).
  • An estimated 4% of Gen Y are likely to be Christians in adulthood. 65% of their grandparents’ generation were Christians; 35% of their parents' generation were Christians. (Bridger Generation by Thom S. Rainer).
I've blogged before about some of my thoughts on why many children are falling away from God. But Ray Comfort, in his book How to Bring Your Children to Christ...& Keep Them There: Avoiding the Tragedy of False Conversion really gets at the heart of it: Many of our churches, our pastors, our youth leaders, and parents have stepped away from the biblical way of bringing people to Christ.

Comfort's premise is pretty simple. While no parent can do anything that will, with 100% certainty, bring her child to Christ, she can follow the principles laid out in the New Testament: Teach the 10 Commandments in such a way the person (in this case, your child) truly feels the tragedy of his or her sin. Then teach that person to dedicate himself to the Bible, prayer, and obeying God.

Comfort does a good job of laying out how you might do this with your child, explaining why it's important to discuss more difficult topics like Hell, and how to explain all of the 10 Commandments in a way that even young children can comprehend. He also offers plenty of ideas for the language you might use, and activities that will aid your "presentation." (My kids' favorite was when I "stole" money from their father's wallet to illustrate that even stealing something worth very little - a penny - is still stealing in God's sight. My daughter, especially, liked it when I took her favorite stuffed animal and loved it so much I neglected all else; this gave her a vivid example of loving one of God's gifts more than loving the Giver of gifts.)

How to Bring Your Children to Christ is a book every parent should read, even if she thinks her child is already saved. It not only helps to ensure your child really "gets it," but it also makes it easier for you to act as missionary in your home - and beyond.

I liked this book so well, in fact, I typed out a lesson plan to use with my 7 year old daughter. Her understanding of faith is very good, and she "asked Jesus into her heart" several years ago, but this is a lesson children should hear repeatedly throughout their life.

The lesson plan is based almost exclusively on Comfort's book, but I found it easier to have all the information in an easier-to-read-as-I-teach format. It also includes links to helpful, free, games and songs you can use to help your child memorize the 10 Commandments. You can download the lesson plan in Word format here.

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